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Canadian vessel to use RNLI design

Tuesday 2nd October 2012

The Canadian Coast Guard is to model its new search and rescue vessel on the hull of a boat designed by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI).

It will be based on the RNLI's Severn class all-weather lifeboat after naval architects Robert Allan Limited (RAL), which was commissioned by the coast guard, signed a rights deal with the charity.

The manufacturing licence agreement allows RAL to use the hull design created by the RNLI's own naval architects. The Canadian Coast Guard requested that its vessel match the hull specifications of the Severn class, the largest in the RNLI fleet.

It is 17.9 metres long and 5.9 metres wide. It is designed to lie afloat and is inherently self-righting. The hull is fibre-reinforced composite with single-skin section below the chine and 100mm thick foam-cored sandwich above.

The RNLI has received an initial payment for the rights to the hull design and will use the income to support its international development work.

Steve Wills, RNLI international development manager, said: "The RNLI's lifeboats are among the best in the world. Our in-house naval architects design the most resilient and technologically-advanced lifeboats to ensure our volunteer crews have the very best equipment available to help keep them safe when they are risking their own lives to save others in danger at sea.

"We're extremely pleased to have this agreement with Robert Allan for Canada's benefit, to be able to share our expertise and information to help them achieve a durable and fit-for-purpose lifeboat design."

The RNLI stepped up its international work in 2011 and helps other organisations by training them in lifesaving skills.

Mr Wills said: "As part of its growing international development work, the RNLI is helping other search and rescue and lifesaving organisations worldwide improve their capabilities to save more lives from drowning. Income generated through sales of consultancy, equipment and design rights - such as this agreement - will help fund the development programmes we are delivering in low- and middle-income countries.'

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